Hello!

18 Comments

Having a new baby is a precious and delicate time. We have this new tiny human we need to make loving and caring choices for. One of these choices is how we feed and nourish them, and we can start to consider this choice when we are pregnant, maybe even earlier for some women.

Throughout this 3-part series we have established the responsibility we all have, as women, in knowing ourselves from the inside out in order to not get caught up in the myths about breastfeeding that are floating around – myths that can potentially affect us detrimentally, both physically and psychologically.

And this is the case with anything that is not true, isn’t it? Lies and myths can hurt, and the effects of these can be felt not just by us, but also by our families and beyond.

This places a great importance on exploring and discussing myths, deconstructing them and the damage they can do, and revealing what the truth really is.

So far, we have explored and discussed in Breastfeeding Myths Busted Part 1 and Part 2:

Myth 1 – Breastfeeding is the ‘best’ way to feed and nourish baby

  1. Breastfeeding is not always what is ‘best’ for some women and babies.
  2. As women, we have the choice of what feeding option is most supportive and the best for us and our babies.

Myth 2 – Breastfeeding is the strongest way to bond with baby

  1. Connecting and bonding with our baby comes from our heart, not our breasts.
  2. We bond with our babies through connecting with them – heart to heart, not from the method we choose to feed them.

Myth 3 – Breastfeeding will be ‘easy’ because it is natural

  1. Breastfeeding is natural, but it is certainly not always ‘easy’.
  2. There can be many challenges experienced while breastfeeding.

Myth 4 – Breastfeeding will help with losing weight

  1. Weight loss comes down to our relationship with ourselves as women, not simply breastfeeding.

So, we now come to two myths that have the potential to cause a significant amount of harm to us, our relationship with ourselves as women, and our families.

Myth 5 – Breastfeeding is a form of contraception

Wow, this myth is a doozy, and has caught out many women with the falseness of it. Breastfeeding is NOT a form of contraception.

There are many, MANY of us who ovulate while we are breastfeeding, and many who fall pregnant way before we are ready to, simply by thinking that because we are breastfeeding we are ‘protected’ and won’t fall pregnant. This is absolutely NOT THE CASE!

There are also those who think breastfeeding is the cause of infertility. Well, the same rules apply here. Breastfeeding is not a form of contraception, so it also makes sense that it is not the reason for infertility.

There is an enormous amount that happens when we have a baby, not just physically, but psychologically. The body needs space to adjust to all the changes it has gone through. We, as women, need space to adjust to all the changes we go through when we have a baby. There is so much more than we can ever imagine happening at this time that to narrow our view to impose the cause of our infertility on breastfeeding is a slap in our naturally intelligent faces.

We are smarter than that and we need to expose the absurdity of this myth and all it comes with, so we can get on with looking after ourselves in a much greater way. A way that is based on truly supporting ourselves and our future decisions about adding to our family or not, and when this might be the right time or not. Plus allowing ourselves the space to investigate what may really be at play if we do experience infertility after already having giving birth.

Myth 6 – Breastfeeding is the reason for not resuming periods

This is a very popular myth that many of us use to explain the delay in us re-commencing our period cycle. The truth is that there are many women who resume their period cycles immediately after, or very soon after, the post birth bleed finishes – while exclusively breastfeeding. So let’s look into this further:

As women, our period cycle is a very important part of being a woman. It is a time where we are given the opportunity to let go of, through bleeding, any unhealthy momentums we may have gotten into during our monthly cycle, and start a new cycle freshly cleansed.

So when we are unable to return to our regular cycle after giving birth (whilst breastfeeding or not) there has to be a reason for this. The most common is because of how we relate to being a mother. It is very common for us, as women, to forget we are in fact a woman first – to nurture and love ourselves – and instead we get drawn into being a mother 24 hours a day with no off button.

Knowing that we were women before we became mothers is an important part of our monthly period cycles returning and not whether we are breastfeeding or not, or for how long.

Six breastfeeding myths exposed

It is hoped that by exposing these six breastfeeding myths in this 3-part series, along with the fact that we all have a choice in how we feed our children, that as women we now understand more about ourselves and our bodies, as well as the importance of taking responsibility for ourselves over and above what we hear or are told. Because as women we have a divine right to know ourselves from the inside out, to know ourselves as the naturally intelligent beings we are, and to connect to the wisdom we all hold within our hearts that is there to guide us through our lives and experiences as women who have children. This is why it is important to debunk the lies and myths that can trap us in harmful cycles, ideals and beliefs, that can affect our sense of well being and our mental health for many years.

To read the entire series of articles click here for Breastfeeding Myths Busted – Part 1 and Breastfeeding Myths Busted - Part 2.

What are your thoughts and feelings on what has been discussed in this article and the myths that have been exposed? Please share in the comments below.

  • I was very lucky to have a strong breastfeeding relationship with my daughter, but I totally agree that it isn’t always what is best for some parents or babies. Each to their own and you need to do what is best in your situation.

    Reply

  • I struggled to breastfeed and had to go onto formula. Fortunately all went well.

    Reply

  • myth 6- lol yeah i have heard that one and breastfeeding to not get pregnant

    Reply

  • I put far too much pressure on myself trying to feed my son, when in reality there were multiple problems. I was expressing and feeding him both breast milk and formula by the age of four months and was also totally exhausted. A trip from my grandmother, who breast feed all 6 of her children changed my mind. She could see how run down I was and the pressure I putting myself through and from external sources, and said “Sometimes what is best for the mother is what is best for the baby, you should stop exhausting yourself and just allow him to be formula fed.” From then on I went to full formula feeds and started to regain a bit of lost energy.

    Reply

  • Me too. I got my period two days after my post birth bleeding stopped for both my children. The first time round I thought I had done something wrong too. Thankfully, I was aware of how much of a blessing it was to regain my natural period cycle so quickly after birth the second time round that it was a time of celebration instead.

    Reply

  • In relation to breastfeeding as to not getting your period this is totally false I thought the same thing as that’s what people had told me so I got a rude shock when Bub was 4 mths and bam there’s my period I thought I’d don’t something wrong but no it’s just normal x

    Reply

  • Definitely an interesting read. I certainly think some of it is factual. Wouldn’t necessarily agree with everything. There are many reasons why a woman chooses not to breastfeed or can’t. I think more people should invest in getting to know what should be “normal” & find out why issues can arise or make feeding difficult (like lip or tongue ties, low milk supply, inverted nipples etc.).

    Reply

  • oh my god. this is a terrible article. IT is simply a play on words in most instances and not at all informative or correct. Shame on you!

    Reply

  • An interesting read, thank Robyn.
    I would say what works for some may not work for others

    Reply

  • Myth 5 – amazes me how many people still believe this! I got pregnant with both #2 & #3 while still breastfeeding, but funny how many people still try to argue with me that it isn’t possible!


    • I agree, why do people argue about the reality you are obviously living? It doesn’t make sense. I wonder what they are avoiding feeling by doing this?

    Reply

  • YEP, some friends got there periods back whilst breast feeding. I just got mine back when my child is 20 months but I still feed regularly, got back on the pill just in case

    Reply

  • Breastfeeding is a form of contraception. So many people still believe that. One friend of mine got pregnant when her first son wasn’t even 9 months old and she was still breastfeeding him.

    Reply

  • So much useful information. Thank you.

    Reply

  • I thought breast feeding did sometimes contribute to delayed return of periods.


    • I sure think that is true.
      I also think that frequent and regular breastfeeding called lactational amenorrhoea method (LAM) is a form of contraception. LAM is about 98 per cent effective.
      However, LAM will only work for you if: *Your baby is younger than six months old. *Your periods have not returned. *You are exclusively breastfeeding your baby on demand, both night and day. And this is where lots of women assume wrong, they start to spread feeding times add some solids and sometimes water and then it’s not exclusive anymore.

      I also do need agree with the statement that these so called myths would be the potential to cause a significant amount of harm to us, our relationship with ourselves as women, and our families. Every one is free to think and decide for themselves, no matter what other people or an article says. Personally I never base my opinion on the base of an article or someone else opinion.



      • There is a lot of misinformation out around these two myths. I am sure that the many women who have fallen pregnant at 6 or 8 weeks post birth because they were told or thought that breastfeeding was a form of contraception are feeling the brunt of them, as they report high levels of anxiety and stress from wondering how they are going to cope with 2 kids under 1 and then the actual reality of doing this. This is harmful and is a great risk factor for a whole host of mental issues, including post natal depression, anxiety disorders, and more.

        Not getting our periods back in a timely manner is also harmful to us as women as we don’t get the grace of clearing our bodies regularly. This has the potential for many physical, as well as psychological, issues to arise (whether these appear in the short term or the long term).

        It is important for us to stop and check in with ourselves (and not information) about what feels true for us, our babies, and our families. This can be a challenge in today’s world, as we are not really supported to do this. As women, we have lost the sense of wisdom we all hold naturally within us and instead allow what is being said or generated outside of us to rule. This can happen on a very subtle level, so many of us are not even aware of it.

        It is time to reclaim our innate wisdom back and start to listen to our bodies as our primary guide and in order to do this we need to be more self-caring towards ourselves and our bodies, as this supports us to re-connect to all the wisdom that is available to us.

    Reply

Post a comment
Like Facebook page

LIKE MoM on Facebook

Please enter your comment below
Would you like to include a photo?
No picture uploaded yet.
Please wait to see your image preview here before hitting the submit button.
Your MoM account


Lost your password?

Enter your email and a password below to post your comment and join MoM:

You May Like

Loading…

Looks like this may be blocked by you browser or content filtering.

↥ Back to top

Thanks For Your Star Rating!

Would you like to add a written rating or just a star rating?

Write A Rating Just A Star Rating
Join